Why brush your dog’s teeth? Although dogs don’t eat a wide range of cavity causing foods that humans enjoy, they need regular dental care for many of the same reasons we do; build-up of tartar, plaque and decay. To prevent gingivitis and gum disease, look for broken or fractured teeth.
I started brushing Bodie’s teeth over the last four years or so. I have to admit that I do not do this every week and I need to make a conscience effort to make it into a weekly event. Some Veterinarians recommend daily cleaning and others two – three times a week. Make sure to check with your pet’s Veterinarian for their professional option on this as well as best tools and dog toothpaste to use.
As a pet owner for over 20 years, my dogs did not come with an owner’s manual. I knew the basics like proper nutrition, exercise, annual check-ups and general care, however I never really gave much thought to brushing my dog’s teeth to be honest.
I am fortunate in a sense that Bodie has always been a chewer. Bones and other special dog treats help to ward off tartar build-up, but does not replace regular dental maintenance.
Toothpaste: Do NOT use human toothpaste. Most human toothpastes include fluoride and other toxic ingredients that if ingested, are not good for your dog and can be extremely poisonous to dogs. You can find dog-formulated toothpaste on-line and at most pet stores. Some of the toothpaste even comes in bacon, peanut butter and other yummy flavors that your dog will enjoy!
Toothbrush: I have a toothbrush that slides over my finger. It is made from silicone and/or there are special angled brushes designed for dogs. You’ll want to find a toothbrush that fits your dog’s teeth size, just like there various toothbrush sizes available for humans.
Keep your dog healthy and make brushing teeth a positive time with your dog. This is one for the dog owner’s manual or at least the one I keep.
Also, there are some great videos demonstrating the proper dog brushing technique. I am sure your Veterinarian would give you a demonstration of this too.
In good health!
~Kelly & Bodie-dog
Proper Technique to brush your dogs teeth https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PsNlLLSBWLU
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